The timeless Bollywood classic Kal Ho Naa Ho is marking its 20th anniversary soon. The heart-touching title song of the film, with lyrics by Javed Akhtar, is still cherished by fans. Recently, Javed opened up about the creation of the iconic title track and expressed gratitude to Karan Johar. The song was composed by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy and sung by Sonu Nigam.
In an interview with Showsha, he recalled the creative journey, highlighting the song’s pivotal role in the film’s narrative. He explained that the song served as the backbone of the script, threading through different situations and dramatic moments. He said, “That song was kind of a spine of the script, and obviously, it was given that dignity within the script.”
Javed remembered that they all planned to go to Pune, stay in a hotel, and work on the music. He joined a day late and went to the suite, which had been turned into a recording space. He walked in and said, “Alright, give me the tune. Let me write a song.” He said, “And they played this tune to me, and I said, ‘I will not write the song to this tune now because I know that I’ll have to stand up on my toes to be able to write words which will come near this’. It was so good, and it affected me so much.”
The lyricist continued, “So then, with certain reverence and love and effort, I wrote that song. That song was not written in nine minutes, that’s for sure. I took time, and then there were different stanzas for different situations. So I did it at different times, but it took a few days. But I should thank Karan for using the song so well that it became important.”
Javed credited the success of the song to the collaborative efforts of producer Karan Johar, and the music directors. He expressed his gratitude towards Karan for using the song strategically in the film, stressing the importance of situational relevance for a song’s impact. Kal Ho Naa Ho starred Shah Rukh Khan, Preity Zinta and Saif Ali Khan in pivotal roles.